The blog of William Barton, an interaction design expert and front end developer with a keen interest in usability and accessibility.

The Industry

Published on 11 March 2012

During the same day I had a similar conversation with a number of people one being a senior member of the academic team at the university and the other a Successful entrepreneur/business owner.

The conversation began with comments about industry experience and how the it commands a certain amount of authority when brought into an academic environment. But, what is “the industry”?

Some groups from the more traditional forms of design like graphic design for example, can design websites; they are just pages that carry content so it’s easy right? But development that needs to be done by someone else. A technician can handle the rest… “Call in the web monkeys!” But code is poetry, the design and creation of a website is an art. We are not the techies that turn a graphic designers dream.psd into a fully functional website with supporting CMS.

Zoom out… We are all in “the industry” we’re “creatives” and we are hired by “suits”, people who according to some don’t have a clue about design the web and apparently their computer. Wrong, they like what they like, they use the Internet both for work and pleasure and just because they don’t know all the shortcuts for Adobe Photoshop they work hard in an industry that supports ours!

Being told this is what happens in industry is vague,this is what happens it what industry? When working for a fledgling company in the electronics industry  I designed, developed, populated and administrated the website I was the designer and the MD was the client, but I was in the electronics industry and I was still in “the industry”. Some of things I had been taught no longer applied. There was no real scope for the site it became organic and evolved over time to cater for the changing needs of the company. I learnt a lot.

So,  welcome to “the industry”.